We met with the pediatric orthopedic surgeon on Wednesday to review Zacchaio's test results. Unfortunately I can't characterize the news as either "good" or "bad."
- What we verified through the MRI of his right arm is that there is a very large lesion/mass/tumor that has eroded away what now looks like 80% of his humerus bone.
- His bone scan was negative which means one of two things. Either the lesion is benign, or contrastingly, is one of the most aggressive and nasty cancers known to man. In this moment I'm feeling as if the only thing a bone scan is good for is instilling an unprecedented amount of fear in parents. It's really good at that.
The plan was to update the blog from the beaches of Venice in Los Angeles, though where I find myself currently is on our own living room couch in oversized sweatpants. A few days ago, Zacchaio woke up with a runny nose, the earliest indication of yet another upper respiratory infection which has historically sent him to the hospital for 1-week long admissions. With plastic surgery scheduled on Friday, we couldn't take any chances and decided to cancel our trip, quarantine him in his own environment, and focus on getting him healthy. Our plastic surgeon is booked solid for the next six months so we can't afford to lose our surgery date! We took it upon ourselves to try something new and have been proactively giving Zacchaio saline nebulizer treatments (normal saline solution converted into mist for inhalation) in hopes of lessening and thinning his secretions. It's been four days of nebulizer treatments every four hours and it seems to be halting the progression of whatever virus he might have contracted. In fact, he is no longer showing signs of a runny nose and we're praying that continues until Friday!
As for Friday...
The timing worked out quite well between the diagnosis of Zacchaio's arm lesion and his plastic surgery date. As soon as the anesthesiologist puts him under on Friday, the orthopedic surgeon will come in (on his day off I might add), make a small incision in his right arm, and biopsy the lesion. I asked how long until we find out if it's malignant? He said we'll know immediately. Friday morning calls for a lot of prayers.
I haven't been nearly as cheerful since Wednesday; I find myself often spiraling out of control with "what ifs." Life has been unimaginably beautiful and it is hard to fathom that cancer may be trying to dampen its brightness. Although the last nine months of Zacchaio's life have been riddled with obstacles, I somehow felt optimistic he was going to overcome each one. When I entertain the realistic possibility of cancer, I'm stricken only with fear. I shouldn't get too far ahead of myself.
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